I am an old user of http://irctc.co.in, the revolutionary Indian Railways website through which you can book rail tickets, get PNR information etc. I remember that there was this website called Indianrail.gov.in which would give you the latest ‘Time Table’ and all that. Recently I learned about a new website which is really a high speed functional side, though the user-interface is a little geeky, its called erail.in. With these thoughts, I think
it might be a good idea to pick the important ones and put them in this post so that it can act as a a quick reference.
Top Websites for Indian Railways
1. http://www.indianrail.gov.in/index.html – This is the official website and is a decent site but overtime other sites are offering better features. But its still the offical site, so you want to check ‘Ticket Cancellation Rules’ or ‘Break Journey Rules’ or want to know the websites of Easter, Western or other zone then visit this site.
2. http://irctc.co.in/ – This is the ticketing site and is being managed by ‘Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Limited’. Beyond ticket booking, probably I wont recommend this site for anything else. I heard that now you can book tickets at some of the private websites (likes of make my trip, Yatra etc) as well but this is still the so called ‘official’ one. Its excruciatingly slow at times but still functional.
3. http://erail.in/ – This is my pick these days and I keep folks referring to this one. Its a no frill but very complex website which is meant to give you the information you need in no time. Its a feature-rich site and it may take few visits to really understand the user-interface but once you have a good hang of it, just visit this. You can get train time table, seats availability, trains between two stations etc in a jiffy.
4. http://www.trainenquiry.com – This is one website which seemed to me ahead of time when I discovered it. This site gives you the running information of any train in real time. If enough awareness is spread, it can save lots of calls which people frenetically make to Railways to find out the running information. This is maintained by CRIS. I think they should get into with some kind of deal with telecom providers so that I can get SMS for any train, if I register. It could be a simple alert service where I can ask myself to be notified everytime it has a new information for a train. For a 18 hour journey, usually the status is not updated more than 5-6 times, so if I need to go to station to pick someone, i would have the latest info.
5. http://irfca.org/ – Finally the website of rail fans. If you are one then you dont need to know what is Rail fan. If you are a Rail lover then you must visit this site.
I would close my list here but I know that I must have missed some so let me know (post a comment) and I would add them here.